December 10, 2009
SERVING LOS ANGELES COUNTY WITH NEWS YOU CAN USE
Vol. XXX, No. 1157
CHRISTMAS IN WATTS — The 44th Annual Watts-Willowbrook Christmas Parade took place along Central Avenue Dec. 5 in Watts. Parade founder Edna Aliewine reports this year’s parade was well attended by local residents and was thankful the weather cooperated. Hundreds of residents and onlookers lined the parade route and greeted the various bands, floats and other parade participants. Pictured, top left to right: Santa and his helpers wish all a Merry Christmas Photos by MARTY COTWRIGHT at the end of the 2009 Watts-Willowbrook Christmas Parade, members of the L.A. Deuces Motorcycles Club Drill Team perform, the “LALA” (Louisiana to Los Angeles) Dancers and spectators dance in the streets, L.A. Watts Times’ managing editor Samuel Richard and columnist Maya Rupert travel the parade route in a 1930 Model A, with owner’s Theresa and Clifton Lefall in the front seats, the Centennial High School Apaches Drill Team performs, the Ballet Forklorico “San Miguel” Presentation-Sisters participate in the 2009 Watts-Willowbrook Christmas Parade. See more photographs on page 6.
New Cartoon a First for Disney, Reflects Trend Toward Diversity BY MIKE CIDONI ASSOCIATED PRESS WRITER
Historic Black Country Club Celebrates 50th Anniversary BY SARAH NAGEM THE NEWS & OBSERVER OF RALEIGH
GARNER, N.C. (AP) — During the years of segregation, the surest way for blacks to spend time on a golf course was to carry clubs for white golfers. Fifty years ago, a group of local black businessmen wanted to change that. So they asked friends to chip in $100 to buy an old tobacco farm near Garner and founded the Meadowbrook Country Club in 1959. Even as the civil rights movement gained momentum and challenged the separate-but-equal barriers of Jim Crow, the Meadow-
brook founders charged ahead throughout the ’60s, building a nine-hole course, a driving range, a swimming pool, a miniature golf course and a clubhouse The group faced resistance, even from some blacks, said M. Grant Batey, one of Meadowbrook’s founding members. Some complained the site east of Raleigh was too far away while others said many blacks didn’t know anything about golf, he said. “So many people said it wouldn’t work,” said Batey, who is now 89. “People get on your case, and you want to prove them wrong.” See COUNTRY CLUB, page 13
Photo Courtesy of THE MEADOWBROOK COUNTRY CLUB
GOLF PIONEERS — Founding members of the Meadowbrook Country Club, circa 1959. During the days of the Civil Rights Movement, the all-black golf club boasted a nine-hole course, a driving range, swimming pool, miniature golf course and a clubhouse.
LOS ANGELES (AP) — For most of the last century, the Disney cartoon heroine was as white as, well ... Snow White, the studio’s first feature-film superstar, who marked her debut in 1937’s “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.” It would take some 60 years for the Disney artists to begin painting their leading ladies with all the colors of the wind, including the American Indian Pocahontas (1995), the Chinese Mulan (1998) and the Hawaiian Lilo (2002). Only now, with “The Princess and the Frog,” have Disney animators put a black female front and center. Ironically, the inspiration for the new film came from two Caucasian men: current PixarDisney chief John Lasseter and the late Walt Disney himself. “The story really came from an initial idea of doing an American fairy tale, which hadn’t been done at Disney,” said “Princess” codirector Ron Clements. “And setting it in New Orleans, which is John Lasseter’s favorite city in the world. It was Walt Disney’s favorite city in the world ... Out of that, it seemed natural that the heroine would be African American.” Discussion of the character’s race had some of the film’s principals bristling. “We walk around being black every day, and nobody talks about it,” noted Anika Noni Rose, who supplies the voice of lead Princess Tiana. “So, I suggest you follow your instinct and let it be nothing to be talked about.” Yet the “Dreamgirls” actress See DISNEY, page 9
AN OLD CLASSIC WITH A NEW TWIST — Prince Naveen (voiced by Bruno Campos) and Princess Tiana (voiced by Anika Noni Rose) are the stars of Disney’s new animated comedy, “The Princess and the Frog.”
NEWS IN BRIEF THE SOUTHLAND War Memorial At Historic Site Draws Lawsuit LOS ANGELES (AP) — A judge has denied a request by an advocacy group to immediately halt construction of a war memorial it claims was being built without proper approvals at a historic downtown Los Angeles site. A Superior Court judge denied The City Project’s motion for a restraining order Dec. 7, saying construction was far enough along that continuing work would cause no further harm. The advocacy group accused officials on Dec. 3 of failing to obtain proper approvals when they allowed crews to begin work on a memorial to war heroes at a downtown site recognized as Los Angeles’ historic birthplace. A lawsuit filed in Los
Angeles Superior Court by The City Project argues that the Eugene A. Obregon Congressional Medal of Honor Memorial would alter parts of the El Pueblo de Los Angeles site that have important historical connections to the city’s Native American, Chinese American and other ethnic communities. The suit also says the memorial, to be built within a grasscovered part of the historical site known as Father Serra Park, diminishes much-needed public space and demands that the city suspend work until a full environmental review is completed. Crews have nearly finished the first stage of the memorial, which consists of a 30-foot long, 5-foot-high plaster wall covered with tiles bearing the names of nearly 3,500 medal recipients. See BRIEFS, page 5
L.A. WATTS TIMES
December 10, 2009
OPINION EARL OFARI HUTCHINSON
LAPD’s Greatest Challenge Catching the Grim Sleeper The Los Angeles Police Department faces one of the most daunting, nerve-wracking, and deadly challenges that any police force has faced: catching the Grim Sleeper serial killer. Former LAPD chief William Bratton dealt with the challenge by setting up a special serial killer unit to nab the killer or killers. This didn’t result in any arrests. New LAPD Chief Charlie Beck now faces the same challenge. The LAPD recently re-released a composite sketch, touted the $500,000 reward the city has put up for information leading to the capture of the killer, and announced that it will put even more police personnel into the hunt. The Grim Sleeper has been a terror for South Los Angeles and an embarrassment for the department since the first body was discovered in 1985 in a back alley in South L.A. In the years since then, the body count has jumped to at least a dozen. The victims have several things in common. They are mostly young. There are allegations that some of them engaged in prostitution and drug use. They are all poor or of marginal income. They are virtually all black women. Despite the intense hunt for the killer, the LAPD has repeatedly hit a stonewall in the case. The failure to crack the case has stirred apprehension and rage in South L.A. Some families and community groups in South L.A. have charged
that LAPD homicide investigators aren’t doing enough to track down the killer or killers. The victims in South L.A., they say, are not the type of women who reflexively ignite police and public outrage. Citizens groups in Cleveland, Atlanta and East St. Louis have made the same charge that police were lax and indifferent in their investigations following a rash of serial killings in those cities. The frustration, anger and complaints are understandable in South L.A. But the LAPD has never shoved the killings into its cold case files and forgotten them. They’ve taken the murders and the hunt for the killer or killers very seriously. This is more than simple professionalism for them; it’s also due to the very compelling need to stop further carnage and allay public concerns over personal safety. They have put countless personnel hours into tracking down leads, tips, and DNA samples. LAPD lab workers matched DNA from 2002 and 2003 killings with the evidence from the 1980s killings, swabbed every inmate in California prisons, and matched fingerprints at the scene with 100 million fingerprints on file nationwide. They have established hot lines, and a Grim Sleeper Web site that provides updated information on the progress of the investigation. In February, CNN even got into the hunt. It established its own Web site with names, dates and details of
the LAPD investigation. Serial killings can’t be ignored no matter who the victims are. They are just too sensitive and emotional an issue. They stoke public fears and anger and the more bodies that pile up heighten the embarrassment to city officials. Crime experts and law enforcement officials admit that serial killings are the toughest cases to crack. There are almost never any eyewitnesses, and there’s little to link the victims. Then there are the internal problems in the probes such as inadequate management of information, lack of coordination between law enforcement agencies, inadequate resources, and the longtime lags between the killings. More than a decade passed between the time the first series of killings in South L.A. happened in the 1980s and the next series of killings in early 2000. The re-release of a sketch of the suspected killer and the widespread media attention it’s gotten again has refocused public attention on the killings. Forums and community meetings have been held in South L.A. recently to keep pressure on the LAPD to intensify the investigation and to urge anyone with any information on the case to contact the police. The capture of the killer will bring some measure of closure to the grieving families of the victims, ease public fears in South L.A., and damp See HUTCHINSON, page 14
What the New Cervical Cancer Screening Guidelines Mean for Women BY SUSAN WYSOCKI AND SUSAN SCANLAN THE AMERICAN FORUM
It’s not surprising that women are confused about the recently changed recommendations for cancer screening and prevention. New guidelines from the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) — the leading medical group that provides health care for women — say women should wait longer to begin cervical-cancer screening and that they should be screened less frequently. On the heels of similar changes to breast-cancer screening guidelines, it’s understandable that many women might see this as a step backward. On the contrary, the new cervical-cancer screening recommendations reflect advances in our understanding of this disease and in tools now available to prevent it. More importantly, they present an opportunity to educate women about the significant opportunity we have to further prevent — if not eliminate — cervical cancer. New ACOG screening guidelines recommend women should begin getting Pap tests at age 21 (as opposed to within three years of becoming sexually active) and that,
from ages 21 to 29, most women should have Pap tests every two years instead of annually. Additionally, screening for women 30 and older with a history of normal Pap test results now moves to every three years. To understand the rationale for these changes, it’s important to first know how the disease develops. Cervical cancer is caused by “highrisk” types of the human papillomavirus (HPV), a common sexually transmitted infection. Most women will have HPV at some point in their lives, but their immune systems will typically clear the virus without symptoms or treatment. HPV infections that persist over time — typically many years — can cause cell changes that can potentially lead to cervical cancer. Because cervical cancer is slow-growing, it generally allows ample time for screening to detect problems that can be treated before the cancer can develop. The majority of women who die of cervical cancer in the U.S. have either never been screened or have not been screened in many years. A Pap test is the traditional means of screening for cervical cancer. It involves examining cervical cells under a microscope to
detect abnormalities that can then be treated, if necessary. Since its use became widespread 60 years ago, the Pap test has helped to significantly reduce cervical cancer rates. So, if the Pap test has been such a success, why change the guidelines? First, newer research shows that cervical cancer is extremely rare in women under 21. Cervical abnormalities among sexually active girls in this age group are common, but they typically go away on their own. Newer studies, however, show that treatment for these abnormalities that would most likely resolve themselves can cause later pregnancy complications, such as premature birth. This is one instance in which treatment can cause more harm than good. By delaying the start of screening, we can hopefully avoid unnecessary treatment. The rationale for less-frequent screening is similar. Evidence shows that screening with a Pap test every year does not offer any additional benefit over screening every two or three years. Waiting longer between screenings can help avoid unnecessary treatment of abnormalities that likely will go away on their own. See CERVICAL CANCER, page 12
Black Girls Gone Wild BY MAYA RUPERT CONTRIBUTING WRITER
Here’s what I’ve always found interesting about tennis: Nothing. My apologies to those who love it, and I’m sure it’s my loss, but I’ve never been able to sit through a single set without getting fidgety, confused about the rules, and wondering what all the fuss is about. Maybe if I knew more about tennis, I would have shared everyone else’s outrage at Serena Williams’ profanity-laced outburst at the U.S. Open in September. But to an outsider, the reaction seemed like par for the course considering, even though I hold an unblemished record of never having watched an entire tennis match, I can name numerous players who have become infamous for their on-court tirades. Andre Agassi once served a 120mph ball at a lineswoman during a semifinal match at Wimbledon. John McEnroe’s violent temper is so well known he has parodied his own belligerence during matches in movies like Mr. Deeds and Anger Management. Jimmy Connors, Ilie Nastase, Jeff Tarango — the sport is full of examples of players losing their tempers during matches and making amends by paying a small fine and promising not to do it again. Until they do it again. But Williams’ outburst at a lineswoman who made a controversial foot fault call that cost her the U.S. Open in a very close match has proven much more difficult to live down. Late last month, Grand Slam administrator Bill Babcock levied a $175,000 fine on Williams, a record for a Grand Slam penalty, along with a two-year probation during which she cannot commit another offense or she will be suspended from the next U.S. Open. Now, I’m not condoning violence in sports. I’ve been complaining ever since the Lakers acquired Ron Artest that I would now have to root for a player who is most well-
known for his participation i n an on-court brawl that spilled over into the stands when he played for Indiana. But I can see Maya Rupert no discernable d i ff e r e n c e b e tween Williams’ saying she wants to shove a tennis ball down the throat of a lineswoman and Agassi whacking a tennis ball at the head of one, except that Agassi’s assault seemed much more likely to happen. But for some reason, Williams is perceived as having crossed a line that her white male counterparts hadn’t. The mitigating factors that have served as excuses in the past — competitive personalities, high stakes, high stress, are all still present but this time, they don’t ease our discomfort with the situation. And we, along with the Grand Slam administration, should ask ourselves why we see it so differently this time. The reason is simple. When Williams lost her temper, wagged her finger and spewed profanity, she turned into the Angry Black Woman. And The Angry Black Woman is wild. She is bitter and mean. She is a bully. And society has no tolerance for her anger because it is rooted in hate and racism. Because of how we perceive the Angry Black Woman, we are threatened by her, but we also think she has no right to be angry. So the anger is both more intimidating than it should be, but given less weight than it should be given. Somehow, we simultaneously take the anger of black women too seriously and not seriously enough. And that’s the problem with the angry black woman stereotype. Sometimes black women get angry. Legitimately angry. Controversialcall-that-cost-the-championship-inthe-US-Open angry. But when that See RUPERT, page 14
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December 10, 2009
L.A. WATTS TIMES
BUSINESS BIZSHORTS Mixxedin Presents December Professional Mixer The December Mixxedin Professional Mixer will take place Dec. 10, 7 to 11 p.m., at Tanzore Restaurant, 50 La Cienega Blvd., Beverly Hills. The “sip and stimulate” session will allow participants to sharpen networking skills and meet fellow ambitious Angelenos. Tiffany Bradshaw, MBA, will host the event and discuss six ways to get business for 2010 and master marketing. Cost is $6 in advance and $10 at the door. Limited free parking is available on La Cienega and surrounding streets. Parking is $4.50 in the garage. For more information, contact Tiffany Bradshaw at (866) 2198558, Tiffany@mixxedin.com or www.mixxedin.com.
Christian Assembly to Host Series for Business Leaders Beginning Jan. 10, 11:15 a.m., the Marketplace Ministry of Christian Assembly Church will kick off a six-session series for business leaders. Each session will last for 90 minutes. In the series, topics to be explored are: discover if God considers your business a “real” ministry; how your business gifts are valuable to God and how they fit His plan; how to succeed in business using the Bible as the basis for all your decisions; how to remain true to Christ’s principles at work in times of economic hardship and ways to learn more about God’s teachings on money and financial success. The series is for all business people. Participants need not attend Christian Assembly. The series will take place at Christian Assembly, 2435 Colorado Blvd., Room 21, in Los Angeles. Space is limited. To sign up, contact MarketplaceMinistry@ caeaglerock.com
Unemployment Rises in Almost Half of Metro Areas WASHINGTON (AP) — Unemployment worsened or stayed the same in most metro areas in October, the Labor Department said Dec. 2, as jobs remained scarce nationwide. The report came a day before the Obama administration held a “jobs summit” at the White House that gathered economists, academics and corporate executives to consider how the government can spur job creation. The jobless rate rose in 162 of the 372 metro areas tracked by the Labor Department. The rate was unchanged in 42 areas. It dropped in 168 areas.
Fedex To Raise Ground, Home Delivery Rates NEW YORK (AP)—FedEx will raise shipping rates for its Ground and Home Delivery units by an average of 4.9 percent in January as it contends with weak freight demand. The company, based in Memphis, Tenn., said Dec. 3 that SmartPost rates also will change, but didn’t specify how. SmartPost is FedEx’s partnership with the U.S.
Postal Service. FedEx Corp. previously announced it will increase Express shipping rates for packages shipped within or from the U.S. by an average of 5.9 percent in January. That rate is partially offset by a lower fuel surcharge. FedEx’s larger rival UPS Inc. is hiking 2010 ground rates by an average of 4.9 percent. The base rate increase for air express and international shipments is 6.9 percent, also offset by a lower fuel surcharge.
Retailers Report Surprise Drop in November NEW YORK — A decline in sales at the nation’s retailers in November after two consecutive months of gains is an ominous warning sign for the holiday shopping season and for an economy in the early stages of a fragile recovery. Many merchants may be forced to discount more than they planned to get financially strapped holiday shoppers to buy after last weekend’s respectable bargain buying surge didn’t offset weak spending for the rest of the month. The 0.3 percent decline, according to one measure, is especially worrisome because it comes on top of a freefall last November as spooked shoppers went into a defensive crouch after the financial meltdown. Analysts had expected a solid gain. Consumer spending accounts for 70 percent of all economic activity. According to sales results announced Dec. 3, a diverse group of stores, including department store chains Macy’s Inc., Saks Inc., teen merchant Abercrombie & Fitch Co. and discounter Target Corp. posted sharper-than-expected sales declines. Children’s Place Stores Inc. was among the biggest disappointments, suffering a steep drop, though Wall Street expected a small gain. Analysts caution that a better gauge of the month may lie in government retail sales numbers, slated to be released Dec. 11. The numbers offer a broader view of spending, including online sales and results from electronics chains.
Pelosi: Bailout Money to Fund Jobs Initiative WASHINGTON (AP) — The top Democrat on Capitol Hill said Dec. 3 that Congress will tap unused funds from the Wall St. bailout to pay for new spending on infrastructure projects and other steps aimed at boosting jobs. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., said money from the bailout should be used to pay for jobs legislation that would funnel billions of dollars to road, bridge and other infrastructure projects and also help struggling state and local governments retain public employees such as firefighters, police officers and teachers. She also promised help for small businesses reeling from a credit crunch. Pelosi’s remarks to reporters came as the White House called a jobs forum of business and labor leaders to explore ideas on how to boost slumping employment figures. See BIZSHORTS, page 15
Building a Financial Plan? Factor in Your Career When it comes to building a financial plan, more and more people are starting to factor in their human capital — their careers. After all, your career just might be the largest asset you have, larger than your house and retirement accounts. At least, that is the case when you’re in your 20s, 30s and 40s. What’s the best way to factor your career into your financial plan? “The first step is to set up a career asset working capital fund,” said Financial Planning Association member Michael Haubrich, CFP, of Financial Service Group, Inc. According to Haubrich, a Conventional Ammunition Working Capital Fund (CAWCF) is a separate account from your emergency cash reserve. “This does not mean the funds cannot be pooled together, rather the amount needs to be con-
sidered separately — one based on three- to six-months living expenses and the other based on other factors,” he said. Haubrich said the amount in your CAWCF will vary based on something he calls “career velocity.” That’s the number of job changes you expect and volatility — the variance of pay over time. “In order to properly diversify your portfolio (including your financial and human capital), both the velocity (how often you change jobs) and the volatility (how much your income fluctuates) of your career need to be examined,” he said. “Working capital for the career asset has three parts — funding skill set maintenance and development (lifelong learning), funding job changes and funding career sabbaticals,” Haubrich said. “The working
capital for your career asset should be viewed separately from your personal or family emergency cash reserves.” “The costs of skill set maintenance and development would be primarily reflected as an expense on the income statement or budget,” he said. “However, there should also be an amount in the working capital reserve to fund an unforeseen need to develop career skills. The appropriate amount would be determined based on the nature of your career.” “The second part of the working capital fund is funding job changes,” Haubrich said. According to a recent study reported by Monster.com, the average number of weeks between jobs for workers under age 50 is 17 weeks. Over age 50 and the number of weeks of See FINANCIAL PLAN, page 4
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L.A. WATTS TIMES
December 10, 2009
COMMUNITY COMMUNITY MEETINGS, FORUMS AND ANNOUNCEMENTS Baldwin Hills Conservancy to Host Meeting The Baldwin Hills Conservancy will have its next meeting Dec. 17, 9:30 a.m. to noon, in the community center of Kenneth Hahn State Recreation Area, 4100 S. La Cienega Blvd., Los Angeles. The public is invited to attend the meeting to address issues related to the conservancy and the community. Individuals wishing to speak on agenda items will be given three minutes to do so. For more information, contact Gloria Dangerfield at (323) 2985270 or www.bhc.ca.gov.
Winter Shelter Homeless Program in Session The Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority (LAHSA) has started its 2009-10 Winter Shelter
Program (WSP). The program runs annually from Dec. 1 through March 15, and increases the number of emergency shelter beds by approximately 1,642 beds at 14 locations throughout the city and county during the coldest and wettest months of the year. LAHSA contracts with local service providers to administer the day-to-day operations of each program, which provides temporary overnight shelter, meals, and access to services. The WSP often serves as an entry point into the continuum of services provided in the Los Angeles area – this allows clients to access additional help in transitioning out of homelessness. Last winter, the WSP provided emergency shelter and services to 8,605 homeless individuals and 620 homeless families. Over the course of the season, the program
‘Tis The Season To Be Safe- Southern California Edison Offers Holiday Safety Tips With the arrival of the holiday season, Southern California Edison (SCE) encourages customers to be safe by providing a few simple tips to help you stay out of harm’s way this holiday season. The decorative lighting we utilize during this time of year is more important to monitor than any other time. “We’re encouraging our customers to enjoy this special time of the year, but also be mindful of the precautions that should be taken to reassure safety,” says Charles Basham, SCE’s manager of public safety. As you begin preparing for the holiday season, we remind you to follow these important safety tips: • Keep electrical connections off the ground and away from moisture. Water and electricity are a deadly combination. • When hanging lights, make sure staples, tacks and nails do not pierce or pinch wires. Use plastic zip cords instead. • Do not use lighted candles on trees or decorations. • Check all indoor and outdoor decorative lighting for worn cords, broken wires and loose connections. • Change bulbs only when the lights are unplugged. • Keep indoor trees well watered so they will not dry RXWDQGEHFRPH¿UHKD]DUGV • Keep lights away from carpeting, furniture, drapes DQGRWKHUÀDPPDEOHPDWHULDOV • Use only three strands of lights per electrical cord or outlet. An overload could cause a short circuit DQGD¿UH • Unplug lights and extension cords when you leave home or go to bed. Use a timer so they are on only during the hours you select, which can also help you save energy. Before you decorate for the holiday, be sure to take time to refer back to these safety tips. Decorating your homes, work places and trees safely and with HQHUJ\HI¿FLHQW OLJKWLQJ ZLOO EULJKWHQ HYHU\RQH¶V holiday. For more holiday safety tips, please visit www.sce.com/safety. Advertorial
provided more than 154,000 nights of shelter and served over 308,000 meals to people in need. Access to winter shelters is available on a first-come, firstserved basis. Those in need of emergency shelter can access free transportation to a winter shelter via the many pick-up points throughout the city and county. A full listing of shelter schedules and pick-up points can be found by contacting www.lahsa.org or the Year Round Shelter Hotline at (800) 548-6047.
100 Black Men of Long Beach to Throw Holiday Mixer 100 Black Men of Long Beach presents “The Art of Giving,” a holiday mixer, Dec. 16, at Roscoe’s Chicken n’ Waffles, 730 E. Broadway Street, Long Beach. A social will take place at 6 p.m. and the program will follow at 6:30 p.m. There will be entertainment from 7 to 9 p.m. An “Opportunity Drawing” for highly valued prizes will also take place. Attendees are encouraged to bring an unwrapped toy or book for distribution to needy families and participants of 100 Black Men’s mentoring program, among others in the community. Donation is $20 and will be used to support 100 Black Men’s ongoing programs. RSVP to the Caring & Sharing
Committee at (562) 244-4236 or email@example.com. Information: www.100blackmenlbc.org or (562) 685-0707.
Save the Date to Hold Bash For New Web Site S a v e t h e D a t e ’s H o l i d a y Cheers Celebration and pre-launch party for its new website, Suite Events.com, will take place Dec. 17, 6-8 p.m., at The “new” Townhouse, 6835 LaTijera Blvd., Los Angeles. SuiteEvents.com will feature a news and events content-driven homepage, an automated and interactive master events calendar with local and global listings, membership profile suites, online marketing services, special promotions and giveaways and more. Bring an unwrapped toy and it will be donated to a local community organization. At 8 p.m., there will be a class for steppers. Light refreshments will be served. Information: (310) 410-9200 or www.townhousela.com. RSVP: (323) 988-7290 or save firstname.lastname@example.org.
Holiday Gathering and Toy Drive Taking Place California State Senator Curren D. Price, Jr. will host the 26th Senate District Holiday Gathering
and Toy Drive Dec. 17, 6 to 8 p.m., at the California African American Museum, 600 State Drive, Exposition Park, Los Angeles. Everyone is invited to come celebrate and experience the different cultures and holiday customs of the 26th Senate District. Sen. Price will also provide an update on his 2009/2010 legislation. Bring one unwrapped toy of $10 value (or more). All toys will be donated to local community organizations. RSVP at (213) 745-6656 or email@example.com with “Holiday Gathering” in the subject line.
FINANCIAL PLAN Continued from page 3 unemployment grows to 22. The Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that the average number of job changes for a young worker today is nine. “Add these two studies together and it is obvious that a fund for job change costs is a necessary part of a personal financial plan,” Haubrich said. According to Haubrich, the last element of the CAWCF is the cost of a career sabbatical. “Career sabbaticals are necessary for career rehabilitation and family or personal transitions that extend from three months on up to a few years,” he said. A financial planner can help you determine the amount that should be in your CAWCF, as well as how it should be invested. For his part, Haubrich recommends this investment strategy: “Not all the funds need to be held in cash since much of the fund is based on future events and contingencies,” he said. “Some cash is necessary — the amount for career maintenance and development and any contingencies less than two years. For the longer term items, such as sabbaticals and [Family and Medical Leave Act] FMLA, using fixed income and lines of credit are more appropriate.” But as with many things related to financial planning, he said rules of thumb often don’t apply. “Each case needs to be considered based on the facts and circumstances,” Haubrich said. Find a financial planner who can help you factor your human capital into your financial plan. This column is produced by the Financial Planning Association, the membership organization for the financial planning community, and is provided by Percy E. Bolton, CFP, a local member of FPA. Bolton can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Facts Dec. 10, 1950 On this date, United Nations Undersecretary Ralph J. Bunche becomes the first person of African descent to be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. Dec. 10, 1964 The Nobel Peace Prize is awarded to Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. He is the second person of African descent to be awarded the prize. Source: blackfacts.com
December 10, 2009
L.A. WATTS TIMES
COMMUNITY BRIEFS Continued from page 1 The memorial’s sponsors also plan a 20-foot high pyramidal monument paying tribute to the medal’s 40 Hispanic recipients. The lawsuit was filed on behalf of the Concerned Citizens for South Central Los Angeles community organization, the nonprofit El Pueblo Park Association and a Tongva Indian group. City attorney spokesman Frank Mateljan says a judge will consider the lawsuit’s request for an environmental review of the 5-foothigh plaster wall bearing names of Congressional Medal of Honor recipients. City Project president Robert Garcia said the group would prepare for trial to stop the memorial.
THE NATION Lawmaker Apologizes For ‘RedNeck Rap’ Video TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — A Kansas lawmaker says he’s sorry if he offended anyone by criticizing President Barack Obama while
wearing a cap that calls opossum “the other dark meat.” Rep. Bill Otto said during a meeting with the NAACP on Dec. 5 that he had “absolutely no thought of anything racial” in his online video, “RedNeck Rap.” But he’s standing by his
rhymes. Among other things, he criticizes bringing Guantanamo Bay prisoners to the U.S. and the economic bailouts. The Republican from Leroy says his cap refers to his roots and “The Beverly Hillbillies” television family that dined on opossum. He
says the message is that anyone can see Congress’ failings. The NAACP demanded an apology after the video was posted in September. In a sequel, Otto offers some praise to Obama. See BRIEFS, page 6
Gang Member Sentenced To Life Without Parole NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — A federal judge has sentenced a Los Angeles gang member to life in prison without parole for multiple counts of murder. U.S. District Judge John Nixon on Dec. 7 sentenced Jamal Shakir who was accused of arranging drug deals, murders and executing power over a gang enterprise authorities say stretched from Los Angeles to Nashville. In October, a federal grand jury indicted two people on charges they plotted to steal a helicopter to help Shakir escape. Prosecutor Sunny Koshi told the judge that officials found a handwritten note in Shakir’s cell on Dec. 7 with instructions on how to get out of handcuffs. Shakir was shackled at the wrists and ankles and guarded by several U.S. Marshals while in the courtroom.
MODESTO, Calif. (AP) — A 5-year-old Modesto boy was killed when a cabinet fell on him while his parents were moving out of their foreclosed home. The accident happened Dec. 6 as Robert Martinez Jr.’s parents moved furniture from the house into the garage to stage it for loading into a truck. According to family members, the boy opened the garage door when no one was looking, and the door hit a cabinet, causing it to teeter. The boy tried to stop the cabinet from tipping, and it fell on him. Modesto firefighters administered advanced life support after arriving at the scene around 11 a.m. He was pronounced dead at Memorial Medical Center. Information from: The Modesto Bee, http://www.modbee.com
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Facts Dec. 12, 1975 The National Association of Black Journalists is formed. The largest media organization for people of color in the world, part of NABJ’s mission is to expand and balance the media’s coverage of the African American community and experience. Source: blackfacts.com
bliss for a buck
L.A. WATTS TIMES
December 10, 2009
Photos by MARTY COTWRIGHT
CHRISTMAS IN WATTS — The 44th Annual Watts-Willowbrook Christmas Parade held Dec. 5 was a festive occasion along Central Avenue in Watts as a variety of bands, floats and other participants delivered holiday cheer. Pictured, top left to right: Actor James Avery, of the hit T.V. series “Fresh Prince of Bel-Air,” was the 2009 Watts-Willowbrook Christmas Parade Marshal, local favorite
Charles Wright, lead singer of the Watts 103rd Street Rhythm Band, members of the Watts Summer Festival staff marched in the parade, carrying a banner paying tribute to the late Tommy Jacquette, founder of the Watts Summer Festival, Drew Magnet High School Drill Team performed, and the Dominguez Hills High School Marching Band performed.
students after a freshman wellness class that addresses a number of health issues. Information from: Philadelphia Daily News, http://www.philly. com
Continued from page 5
Pa. School Drops Required Fitness Class For Obese Students OXFORD, Pa. (AP) – Obese students at a historically black college near Philadelphia won’t have to take a fitness class to graduate after all. Lincoln University faculty nixed the idea amid complaints the so-called “fat course” undermined a school principle of equal treatment. The school had initiated the policy to address high rates of obesity and diabetes, especially in the African-American community. About 80 students had gotten e-mails saying they had to take the fitness course to graduate. The plan was to target students with a body mass index of 30 or above. That’s considered obese. The “Fitness for Life” course will instead be suggested to certain
Promotion Event Scheduled For New Haven Firefighters NEW HAVEN, Conn. (AP) — A promotion ceremony is scheduled to be held Dec. 10 for New Haven firefighters who won a reverse discrimination case in U.S. Supreme Court. The ceremony comes after a federal judge ordered New Haven officials to promote 14 firefighters. U.S. District Judge Janet Bond Arterton followed the Supreme Court’s instructions and ruled that white firefighters’ civil rights were violated when officials threw out the results of two 2003 promotional exams because no black firefighters scored high enough to be promoted. See BRIEFS, page 11
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December 10, 2009
L.A. WATTS TIMES
WHATâ€™S GOING ON? Deadline for receipt of Whatâ€™s Going On listings is Friday, 12 p.m., at least two weeks prior to activity. Fax to: (213) 251-5720, e-mail us at email@example.com or mail to: L.A. Watts Times, 3540 Wilshire Blvd., PH3, Los Angeles, CA 90010. GEM FAIRE â€” A marketplace of gemstones, beads, jewelry, minerals, fossils, meteorites, lapidary equipment and metaphysical items will be held Dec.11 from noon to 7 p.m., Dec. 12 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., and Dec. 13 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. This event will take place at the Orange County Fair and Event Center, 88 Fair Drive, Costa Mesa. Admission costs $5 and children under 12 may enter for free. Parking is available for $8. Information: www.gemfaire.com. â€˜MAKUSAAND THE DRUMâ€™ â€” The 7th annual Heritage Celebration of the Culture and Language Academy of Success (CLAS) will be held Dec. 11, 7:30 p.m., at the Wilshire Ebell Theatre, 4401 W. 8th St., Los Angeles. All 300 students of this independent African-centered school will perform in this produc-
tion. Tickets for this event are $25 $35 and can be purchased at the CLAS Box Office 2930 W. Imperial Hwy., Suite 512, Inglewood, or on the website at www.cultureandlanguage.org. HOMEOWNER ASSOCIATION â€” Candidates for the United Homeownerâ€™s Association, a 30year-old organization of long-term View Park, Windsor Hills and View Heights homeowners, will hold an informational â€˜meet the candidatesâ€™ gathering, Dec. 12, 2 to 4 p.m. Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas and Assembly Speaker Karen Bass have been invited to attend. This event will be held at a private residence. Information: (310) 804-5201, mtc@ newvisionuha.org. ROUNDTABLE â€” The Contemporary Issues Roundtable, sponsored by the Los Angeles Urban Policy Roundtable, presents California Assemblyman Mike Davis speaking on â€œThe California Budget Crisis â€“ What it Means for African Americans,â€? Dec. 14, 10 a.m., at the Oasis Senior Center, located on the 2nd floor of Macyâ€™s in the Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza, 3650 W.
Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., Los Angeles. Information: (323) 383-6145. SANKOFAâ€™S WORD â€” The community is invited to participate in an evening of spoken word Dec. 16, 7 to 10:30 p.m., at the 27th Street Bakery, 4308 Crenshaw Blvd., Los Angeles. There will be an art exhibit by Shekinah Shakur (â€œThe Art Healerâ€?) this event will be hosted by Storm and Rashodra Angelle. A love offering will be accepted at the door. Vegan food and visual arts will be available. Information: (323) 5173222, SanKofa39Word@yahoo.com. TOY DRIVE â€” 48th District Assemblyman Mike Davis is spon-
Background on Copenhagen Talks AP â€“ Some 15,000 delegates, environmentalists, scientists, journalists and others began gathering in Copenhagen, Denmark, since Dec. 7 to begin two weeks of negotiations on what to do about climate change. Hereâ€™s a look at what's happening there: Q: Why is this meeting happening? A: Itâ€™s called â€œCOP-15â€? for the 15th Conference of Parties to the 1992 U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change. The 1992 deal is better known as the Rio treaty. That agreement was ratified by 192 nations, including the U.S. Since then, delegations have met each year to discuss how the world can combat global warming. The most important previous meeting occurred in Kyoto, Japan, in 1997, when a treaty protocol ordered cuts in carbon dioxide and other global warming gases from 37 industrialized nations. The U.S. rejected that pact. Q: What is expected to be accomplished at Copenhagen? A: Copenhagen is expected, at best, to reach political agreements on key elements, advancing talks into next year. The hope is a binding treaty could be signed then. Industrialized nations, including the U.S., are expected to cut emissions between 2012 and 2020. Developing nations also are expected to rein in fossil fuel use and slow the growth in their emissions. Another important element involves rich nations paying poor ones to help them deal with droughts, floods and other effects of climate change, and to install clean-energy technology to curb their own emissions. Q: What would such a new international agreement do to stop global warming? A: Experts say the emissions reductions pledged in recent days would fall far short of whatâ€™s needed to keep temperatures from rising to dangerous levels. That benchmark is anything more than 2 degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit) above temperatures before the Industrial Revolution when man started widespread use of coal and other fossil fuels.
REMEMBRANCE â€” A â€œCelebration of Life Serviceâ€? for artist and archivist Avery Clayton will be held Dec. 19, 10 a.m., at the Agape International Spiritual Center, 5700 Buckingham Parkway, Culver City. The family of Avery Clayton has asked that, in lieu of flowers, the public make donations to the Mayme A. Clayton Library and Museum, 4130 Overland Ave., Culver City, California 90230-3734. For more information on the Celebration of Life, call (310) 348-1250.
soring a Holiday Celebration and Toy Drive, Dec. 16, 6 to 9 p.m., at the Natural History Museum, 900 Exposition Blvd., Los Angeles. There will be food, entertainment and networking, and an unwrapped toy is required for admission into this event. Information: (213) 744-2111
FAIR â€” Metropolitan African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church will hold a Christmas Arts and Crafts Fair Dec. 19, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., at 2521 W. View St., Los Angeles. This event is sponsored by the Steward and Stewardess Board. Information: (323) 733-4418. See WGO, page 14
The California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) will hold meeting for interested Small Business Owners to discuss the advertisement of two Architectural & Engineering (A&E) Contracts. This meeting is scheduled for December 14 between 10 a.m. and noon in the Caltrans Los Angeles office located at 100 S. Main Street. The meeting will be held in Conference Room 1.037 on the first floor. Representatives from Caltrans Economic Business and Development Program, Division of Construction and the Division of Procurement and Contracts will be in attendance to answer your contract related questions. The below information provides a brief description of the projects. Ventura County Contract Scope of Services: Professional and technical construction engineering services such as construction inspection and CPM scheduling on an "as needed" basis to support the development and construction of proposed State transportation projects in Ventura County. Contract Amount: Contract Duration: Contract Advertisement: UDBE Goal: DBE Goal:
$3 Million to $5 Million 3 years January 2010 10% 15%
Claims Analysis Contract Scope of Services: Professional claim analyses services on an "as needed" basis to support the development and construction of proposed State transportation projects in District 7 (Los Angeles and Ventura counties). Contract Amount: Contract Duration: Contract Advertisement: UDBE Goal: DBE Goal:
$1 Million to $3 Million 3 years January 2010 6.75% 6.75%
You may call me direct at (213) 897-0597 should you have any questions regarding this meeting. You can call Jay Shah for contract specific question at (213) 897-7985. Plan to arrive early as parking in the area is at a premium. We look forward to seeing you there.
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L.A. WATTS TIMES
December 10, 2009
ARTS & CULTURE CARRY, the Coalition for At-Risk Youth, held its 2009 annual gala Dec. 4 at the Beverly Hills Hotel in Beverly Hills. The event was a fundraiser for the organization that benefits foster youth throughout the city of Los Angeles. The 2009 CARRY special honoree was actor and comedian Martin Lawrence.
Martin Lawrence and guest
CARRY founder Dr. Pearl Grimes, Martin Lawrence, Thelma Houston, Jenifer Lewis
actress Lorraine Toussaint
Comedian and actor Cedric “The Entertainer”
Academy Award-winning actor Morgan Freeman and Grammy Award-winning jazz musician Herbie Hancock attend the Los Angeles premiere of “Invictus,” Dec. 3, at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in Beverly Hills. “Invictus,” which opens nationwide Dec. 11, is the story of South African President Nelson Mandela’s quest to use sports to unify his fractured country.
The Hollywood Reporter magazine held its annual “Women in Entertainment Breakfast” Dec. 4, at the Beverly Hills Hotel in Beverly Hills.
Actresses Eva Longoria-Parker, Hillary Swank and Halle Berry, recipient of this year’s Sherry Lansing Leadership Award
Actress Tamala Jones
December 10, 2009
L.A. WATTS TIMES
ARTS & CULTURE SHORT TAKES being faithful on road-trips. Shaquille O’Neal’s wife, Shaunie, will be featured and is an executive producer. Others taking part are Eric Williams’ wife, Jennifer, and Mesha O’Neal, married to Jermaine O’Neal. “Basketball Wives” debuts March 15.
FILMS • The Black Hollywood Education and Resource Center will present its 16th Annual African American Film Marketplace and Sandra Evers Manly Short Film Showcase Dec. 19 – 20, 10 a.m. to 10 p.m., at the Nate Holden Performing Arts Center, 4718 W. Washington Blvd., Los Angeles. More than fifty short films and
can use Yoga and its components for improving and preserving health naturally. The tutorials reference several leaders in natural healthy living practices such as the late Sri Swami Vishnu-Devananda, author of the “Complete Illustrated Book of Yoga,” Professor Arnold Ehret, author of the “Mucus-less Diet Healing System,” and Frederic Patenaude, author of “The Raw Secrets.” For more information, call (323) 496-6396 or visit www.bodyhealthsoul.com.
• Los Angeles-based blogger and author Foras Aje has recently released an eBook, “Fitness: Inside and Out,” along with free online video tutorials at www.bodyhealth soul.com to show readers how one
SOLSTICE • The International Black Writers and Artists organization will celebrate the Winter Solstice and their 35th Anniversary Dec. 20, 2 to 6 p.m., at St. Elmo Village,
documentaries from around the country, as well as seminars and panels will take place. A $5 donation is requested to attend the festival each day. For a schedule of the films and more information, visit www.bherc.org or call (310) 2843170.
PERFORMANCE/WORKSHOP • Los Angeles-based musical group Ozomatli will lead a workshop as part of The GRAMMY Museum’s monthly “Musical Explorations” family program. This event will be held Dec. 19, noon, at The GRAMMY Museum at L.A. LIVE, 800 W. Olympic Blvd., Suite 200, Los Angeles. During the special children’s show, band members will lead parents and families through an exploration of
their musical influences and teach participating children one of their favorite songs. Children who attend will be invited to join Ozomatli onstage at their headlining Club Nokia show, Dec. 19 at 9 p.m. Adults buying tickets to both the Museum and Club Nokia shows on Dec. 19 will be able to bring their children (age 10 and under) to the evening show free of charge. To RSVP or for more information, call (213) 765-6800, ext. 6, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Central Los Angeles Regional Center. This event will take place Dec. 12, noon to 3 p.m., on the campus of The Junior Blind of America, 5300 Angeles Vista Blvd., Los Angeles. This event will feature face painting, arts and crafts, interactive sporting events, gifts for youngsters age 8 to 18 and celebrity guest appearances are scheduled. For more information, call (909) 868-9677.
• The Aliah Sweet Fragile Hearts Foundation, a non-profit organization granting wishes to siblings of children who have severe disabilities, will co-sponsor a Christmas celebration for 250 siblings of consumers of the South
• A VH1 reality series that promises an inside look at the lives of NBA players’ wives and girlfriends is set to air early next year. VHI said Dec. 7 that “Basketball Wives” will show the upside of the women’s lives — big homes, designer clothes and jewelry — and the drawbacks, including worries about whether their husbands are
‘Tiana,’” said veteran character actress Jenifer Lewis, widely known as “the black mother of Hollywood.” “It is a new day,” she continued. “There is hope. There is change. That is what this movie is going to bring.” Perhaps, but the directors remind us that making history was never their point.
“It is a universal story,” Musker said. “It is a story of trying to follow your dreams and overcoming obstacles. And I don’t think that necessarily knows a certain color.” Walt Disney’s “The Princess and the Frog” is now playing in Los Angeles and New York and opens throughout the United States on Dec. 11.
DISNEY Continued from page 1 continued to talk: “The big deal is that it will quietly affirm to young brown-skinned children that they are special in this world,” Rose said. “And I think that it is a bigger deal to those of us who grew up without it and are now adults and have been waiting for it. It’s exciting to us, because we know how important it is to our children to have, to be image-affirmed.” Production was started on “Princess” in March 2006, long before the election of a new American president. “We tried to arrange that,” joked co-director John Musker. “We voted for Obama,'' Musker continued. “That was about as much influence as we had on things.” But the coincidence is not lost on some members of the “Princess” cast. “It is historical in the sense now that there is ‘Obama’ and
4830 St. Elmo Drive, Los Angeles. There will be music, Spoken Word and storytelling and vendors, along with light refreshments. Admission to this event consists of canned food donations which will be given to local food banks. For more information, call (323) 964-3721 or e-mail email@example.com.
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Dec. 11, 1917 Thirteen black soldiers were secretly hanged at dawn at a military camp outside San Antonio, Texas, for their parts in a Houston race riot four months earlier. The soldiers maintained they were defending themselves from a white mob.
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L.A. WATTS TIMES
December 10, 2009
ARTS & CULTURE
“Playing” Versus “Working” With Morgan Freeman BY DARLENE DONLOE CONTRIBUTING WRITER
Music, a universal communicator, has always had the ability to bring people together. So, too, has sports, evidenced by the international harmony surrounding the Olympic Games. In 1995, rugby played an enormous role in unifying South Africa — at the time a newly democratic nation once lumbered with the plague of apartheid. President Nelson Mandela, in an attempt to bring solidarity to his severely racially and economically divided nation, enlisted the help of Francois Pienaar, the captain of South Africa’s rugby team (Springboks), to help unify their country behind the team’s appearance in the 1995 World Cup championship. Of course, the request was much bigger than a rugby match. It would come to symbolize so much more. The story of how Mandela ( ca l l ed b y h is c la n na m e of ‘Madiba’) and Pienaar worked together, even under what seemed like insurmountable obstacles, is told in the inspirational true story, “Invictus,” in theaters nationwide Dec. 11. The movie stars Morgan Freeman as Mandela and Matt Damon as Pienaar. For years, Freeman and his
producing partner, Lori McCreary, had been in development on a movie about Nelson Mandela based on his autobiography, ‘A Long Walk To Freedom’. And, while “Invictus” is the true story of Mandela’s release from prison and his determination to use World Cup rugby as a kind of reconciliatory olive branch, Freeman, who recently won Best Actor for “Invictus” from the National Board of Review, acknowledged it was impossible to capture the entire span of the South African leader’s story in one feature film. I recently caught up with Oscar® winners Freeman (“Million Dollar Baby’) and Damon (“Good Will Hunting”) who talked about making such a poignant film about uncomfortable issues. LAWT: Morgan, how did you go about preparing to play one of the most revered men on the planet? MF: When he had said that he would prefer that I be the one to play him, in 19-- whatever that was. I had to start then preparing myself to do it. So, I met him not long after that and I said, ‘if I’m going to play you, I’m going to have to have access to you. I’m going to have to be close enough to hold your hand.’ And, over the years while I was trying to develop ‘A Long Walk To Freedom,’ that is
what happened. Whenever we were in proximity, like a city away for instance, I would know about it and I would go to him and have lunch, dinner or sit with him while he’s waiting to go on stage or whatever. And, during that time, I would sit and hold Madiba’s hand. That’s not camaraderie. I find if I hold your hand, I get your energy. It transfers and I get a sense of how you feel. That’s important to me trying to become another person. I have a lot of pressure to bring a character like that to life in any kind of real sense. The danger, of course, is always a caricature, sort of indicating what the person is like. The biggest challenge, of course, was to sound like him. And, everything else was like to walk like him. He had some tics and things I noticed. I didn’t have any agenda as it were, in playing the role, other than to bring it as close to reality as I possibly could. The agenda is incorporated in the script and all I had to do was learn my lines. LAWT: Matt, why is this an important story to tell? MD: The film is telling a story that I think is a wonderful thing to remind everybody of in South Africa and all over the world. If we listen to the better angels of our nature they are creating a good solution to serious problems. It’s
UNCONQUERABLE — “Invictus,” which opens nationwide Dec. 11, tells the story of South African President Nelson Mandela’s quest to use sports to heal his fractured nation. The film, directed by Clint Eastwood, stars Academy Awardwinners Morgan Freeman and Matt Damon. Top: Morgan Freeman as Nelson Mandela on the day he is released from a South African prison in 1990; Bottom: South African President Nelson Mandela (Morgan Freeman) meets with Francois Pienaar (Matt Damon), captain of the Springboks, South Africa’s rugby team, in a scene from “Invictus.”
an uplifting movie and from the moment I read it, I was excited about being just a part of the ensemble that told the story. I think it’s a good thing to put out
there, particularly now. Not a lot of good news so this is a nice thing to put out for the holidays. See MORGAN FREEMAN, page 15
Congress in Your Neighborhood
Congresswoman Laura Richardson invites you to attend the grand opening of the NEW 37th Congressional District office in Compton. The office will provide convenient inͲperson constituent services to your neighborhood in Compton.
Saturday, December 12th at Saturday December 12, 2009 @Noon 11:45 AM This new 37th Congressional office is located in:
&+226(726$9(7,0( LADWP Self-Service Options
LADWP customers can quickly access their accounts by phone at 1-800-DIAL DWP or online at www.ladwp.com. • Check water allotments • Request payment extensions • Make payments • Start or stop water and electric service • Check bill balances • Dial-in for power outage information and estimated time of service restoration
Compton City Hall 205 S. Willowbrook Ave., Lobby Level Corner of S. Willowbrook & Compton Blvd Phone: (310) 605Ͳ5520 Congresswoman Laura Richardson and her staff will be there to share with you the Congressional services that will be available: N Assistance with Government Agencies N Veterans Claims N Passports and Visas
N Military Academy Nominations N Medicare Help for Senior Citizens N Assistance with Casework
Just to name a few.
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Normal office hours starting January 18, 2010: Tuesdays 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Thursdays 1:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.
December 10, 2009
L.A. WATTS TIMES
EDUCATION Calif. Schools to Get Masks to Curb Swine Flu
NOTEBOOK Alcorn President Resigns to Take Michigan Post JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — Alcorn State University President George E. Ross is leaving the Mississippi campus to take a job in Michigan. The state College Board announced Dec. 3 that Ross, 58, will relocate to Central Michigan University on March 1 to become its presi- George E. Ross dent. Some say Ross’ unexpected departure comes at a bad time for Alcorn State. Gov. Haley Barbour has proposed merging Alcorn with the two other historically black schools — Jackson State University and Mississippi Valley State University — to reduce state budget costs. “We certainly wish Dr. Ross all the best, but it couldn’t have been at a more difficult time when we’re dealing with real difficult questions on how we’re going to proceed with higher education,” said House Universities and Colleges Committee Chairman Kelvin Buck, D-Holly Springs. Buck said he’s hopeful the process to replace Ross will move swiftly. He said legislators opposed to Barbour’s recommendation will “try to come up with some solutions that won’t involve closing or merging.” Ross and the other black college presidents have criticized Barbour’s proposal, which will be presented to lawmakers when the Legislature convenes in January. Last month, Ross said Alcorn State should remain independent because it’s an economic engine for the southwest Mississippi region.
Morgan State University Selects New President BALTIMORE (AP) — The supervisor of Wisconsin’s twoyear colleges has been selected to lead Morgan State University. Officials at the historically black school in Baltimore announced Dec. 3 that David Wilson will replace Earl Richardson, who plans to step down David at the end of June Wilson after 25 years. Wilson attended Tuskegee Institute — now Tuskegee University — in Alabama, and says historically black institutions hold a special place in his heart. The son of Alabama sharecroppers who earned a doctorate from Harvard, Wilson says he was impressed with Morgan’s faculty and its production of AfricanAmerican engineers and scientists. He says he plans to expand the university’s doctoral programs. Wilson will take the job officially on July 1.
Top School Retaliated Against Black Teacher, Jury Rules BOSTON (AP) — A jury has found that the elite Boston Latin School retaliated against a black teacher who claimed discrimina-
tion after administrators stripped him of his teaching position and replaced him with a less experienced white teacher. Jurors in Suffolk Superior Court this week awarded Jonathan Bonds $341,000 for his claim that the school refused to appoint him chairman of its history department in 2006. The jury, however, rejected his discrimination claims. Bonds told The Boston Globe that his case was about “reputation and honor.” A spokesman for the Boston public schools says administrators intend to file additional motions in the case. Boston Latin, founded in 1635, is the oldest public school in the nation and students must pass a rigorous exam to attend.
NAACP Files Complaint against NC School District RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — An eastern North Carolina public school system has deliberately segregated schools, putting black students at a disadvantage and creating “a district of apartheid education,” the NAACP said in a federal complaint filed Dec. 1. State NAACP president Rev. William Barber said at a news conference Dec. 1 that the organization filed a civil rights complaint with the U.S. Justice and Education departments against the Wayne County school district in Goldsboro. If the Department of Justice approves the complaint, it would go to court, Barber said. NAACP attorney Irving Joyner said the school system is accused of violating Title VI of the Civil Rights Act, which makes it illegal to distribute federal funds on the basis of racial discrimination. Barber cited policies that he says have resulted in lower graduation rates, higher suspension rates and more and stiffer discipline for black students. He says the central attendance district in Goldsboro has a student population that’s almost 100 percent black while another district in Goldsboro is almost 90 percent white.
Plan for Museum at Home Where Black Students Met LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — Every day before heading to Little Rock Central High School toward the end of 1957, nine black students gathered at Daisy and L.C. Bates’ home to prepare for the angry mob they would face as they integrated the all-white Central High School. “It was kind of like a war room in a sense,” said Carlotta Walls LaNier, one of the black students commonly known as the Little Rock Nine. “It was a place that we gathered and got ready to go to school and where we would come back to. It was a place of nurturing and a place of debriefing where we could at least have a laugh or two from that day.” The small tan brick home in south Little Rock is easy to miss, with a plaque in the front yard marking it as a national historic See NOTEBOOK, page 14
SANTA FE SPRINGS, Calif. (AP) — California school districts will receive 23 million masks and pairs of gloves to help curb the spread of swine flu, the state schools chief announced on Dec. 4. “We want to keep students, teachers and staff healthy and in school,” Superintendent of Public Instruction Jack O’Connell said in a statement. Details of the program were being released at a Los Angeles County warehouse in Santa Fe Springs packed with boxes of disposable gloves and masks. The items, paid for by federal grants, will be shipped free to 58 county offices of education and to the Los Angeles Unified School
District, which is the nation’s second-largest district. They are intended for roughly 10,000 public schools with about 6.3 million students in more than 1,000 districts, said Hilary McLean, a spokeswoman for the California Department of Education. Shipping of the supplies began late last month, she said. Federal guidelines recommend that students with H1N1 symptoms such as fever, cough, and sore throat be sent to a separate office or sick room until they can leave campus. But it can take several hours before parents can pick up their children, McLean said. In the meantime, the child
will be asked to wear a surgical mask while the school nurse or other staffer will wear a different type of mask and gloves, McLean said. There have been more than 7,200 cases of swine flu reported in California this year, 366 of them fatal, according to the state Department of Public Health. Although some counties have reported drops in the number of new swine flu cases, indicating the pandemic may have peaked locally, McLean said schools can always store the masks and gloves in case there’s an outbreak of another type of flu. “Next year, we’re sure to have another flu season,” she said.
BRIEFS Continued from page 6 The lead plaintiff, Frank Ricci, and seven others will be promoted to lieutenant, and six firefighters will be promoted to captain. City officials said they also will promote 10 other firefighters who scored well enough to be promoted.
Secret Service Report Details 91 Security Breaches WASHINGTON (AP) — An internal Secret Service document reveals that last month’s gate crashing incident at a White House state dinner was one of 91 security breaches since 1980. The 2003 report was used for training purposes, and helped agents evaluate security procedures and improve their response to breaches, Secret Service spokesman Ed Donovan said. A breach can range from a White House fence jumper to a fame-seeking Virginia couple making their way inside a state dinner without an invitation, he said. Tareq and Michaele Salahi were not on the guest list for the Nov. 24 dinner and had not been cleared by the Secret Service for admission into the White House. Despite that, they were allowed in, shook hands with President Barack Obama, and had their picture taken with Vice President Joe Biden. While testifying before Congress last week, Secret Service director Mark Sullivan said normal security protocols were not followed during the dinner. Three officers have since been put on administrative leave. The gate crashing was among ten security breaches since 2001, Donovan said. Eight have happened off White House grounds. An official who had access to the report said most but not all of the 91 breaches involved the president. The official spoke on the condition of anonymity because the person was not authorized to discuss the report. The document was first reported in The Washington Post.
THE DIASPORA Cuba Blasts US Black Leaders for Charges of Racism HAVANA (AP) — Cuba hit back on Dec. 5 at 60 prominent U.S. black leaders who challenged its race record, with island writers,
artists and official journalists calling the criticism an attack on their country’s national identity. The five-page signed statement, distributed by Cuban government press officials in an e-mail, defended Cuba’s progress in providing social and personal opportunities for blacks and people of mixed race. But it focused more on Cuba’s past than the situation in contemporary Cuban society that came under criticism from Americans such as Princeton University professor Cornel West; Jeremiah Wright, former pastor of President Barack Obama’s Chicago church; and Susan Taylor, former editor of Essence magazine. Many artists and leaders in the U.S. black community have traditionally supported Castro’s government, but the criticism said that “racism in Cuba ... must be confronted.” It also called for the release of Darsi Ferrer, a black physician and political opposition leader who is celebrated in the U.S. but virtually unknown on the island. Ferrer was arrested in July for obtaining black-market building materials to repair his home in a
Raul and Fidel Castro
country where the state controls nearly all construction. Human rights activists say officials prosecuted Ferrer for a crime they often overlook in order to silence him. Cuba’s response said the country has proven its racial credentials by sending troops to Angola and Ethiopia during the 1970s and offering free education through exchange programs and medical schooling to youngsters from Africa. It also accused the signers of the U.S. statement, which was released Dec. 1, of being unaware that Cuba offered to send medical assistance after Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans — a gesture the U.S. State Department turned down. See BRIEFS, page 14
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L.A. WATTS TIMES
December 10, 2009
Diabetics: Don’t Double Up on Danger This Holiday Season BY SAM HASSAN L.A. GARMENT & CITIZEN
The holiday season presents plenty of challenges to diabetics, with parties featuring buffets of food and plenty of cookies, cakes and other sweets to go around. This year the challenges are even tougher because diabetes patients could face added risks for catching the H1N1 virus, also known as “swine flu.” “Diabetics in general, if they’re not well controlled, are more susceptible to any infection,” according to Dr. Christian Gastelum, an endocrinologist and teacher on the staff of the internal medical residency program at White Memorial Medical Center in the Boyle Heights district east of Downtown. “The elevated blood glucose impairs their immune system, so their immune cells or white blood cells don’t work properly, and they’re unable to fight off bacterial and viral infections as well as their nondiabetic counterparts.” Concerns about diabetic patients facing the risks of H1N1 are particularly strong in Los Angeles with its large populations of Latino Americans, Asian Americans, and African Americans. Medical research indicates that diabetes affects
members of those ethnic groups at higher rates compared to the overall population. Medical officials say that the heightened risk of contracting H1N1 doesn’t mean that individuals with diabetes should stop going out in public — but in most cases they should seek a vaccine against the virus and take care of their diets and medications. “So, if patients think to themselves, ‘well, I’m taking my medicine and that should protect me,’ they need to know what actually protects them is a normal blood glucose level,” Gastelum says. “Things in our body work the way they’re supposed to when our blood glucose is normal.” Such efforts are all the more important, medical professionals say, because complications from H1N1 can be more severe for a person with diabetes. H1N1 can lead to dehydration, especially in patients with compromised kidney functions, as is often the case with diabetics. H1N1 patients often suffer from severe nausea and vomiting, which can also harm their kidneys in the long run, and the effects of the flu can cause diabetes to spiral even further out of control.
Gastelum says that anyone with diabetes who believes they are suffering from flu symptoms should seek immediate medical attention. “If they do have symptoms — body ache, significant fever — and if it’s early enough — there are some antiviral medications such as Tamiflu that we can use,” he says. “They won’t necessarily cure the infection, but they’ll make the symptoms much more tolerable and patients are much less likely to end up in the hospital.” Visit White Memorial Medical Center’s website at whitememorial.com on the Internet for more information in Spanish and English. Visit the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health website at lapublichealth. org — or call the toll-free 2-1-1 telephone line — for more dates and locations for H1N1 vaccination clinics and other information in English, Spanish, Arabic, Armenian, Chinese, Farsi, Khmer, Korean, Russian, Tagalog and Vietnamese. Sam Hassan is a writer for the L.A. Garment & Citizen which, along with the L.A. Watts Times and five other publications, publishes local stories from ethnic media on www.labeez.org.
CERVICAL CANCER Continued from page 2 Also, new technological advances offer women 30 and older – the group most at risk for cervical cancer — more protection against this disease. For these women, an HPV test is now available and uses molecular technology to determine whether HPV is present. An HPV infection that continues for years is what leads to increased risk of developing cervical cancer. If an HPV infection is found, a woman can be monitored more closely by
her clinician. A negative HPV test in tandem with a normal Pap test can give a clinician and her patient increased reassurance that the woman is not at risk of developing cervical cancer for at least the next three years. The HPV test also is used for women of all ages to help clarify inconclusive Pap test results. The HPV test is not used routinely in women under 30 because HPV is so common in this age group that a positive HPV test could lead to
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unnecessary treatment. While screening is critical to preventing cervical cancer, two HPV vaccines — the first-ever vaccines to fight a cancer — are now FDA-approved and offer significant potential to help reduce cervical cancer rates. Remember, these new screening recommendations are simply guidelines and that clinicians, in conjunction with patients, need to determine the most appropriate cervical-cancer prevention approach for each woman. These new guidelines provide an opportunity for more conversation on this issue between women and their healthcare providers. After all, few things are better for women’s health than educated and empowered patients. Susan Wysocki is president and CEO of the National Association of Nurse Practitioners in Women’s Health. Susan Scanlan is chair of the National Council of Women’s Organizations.
Facts Dec. 9, 1961 The country of Tanganyika, located on the eastern coast of Africa, proclaims its independence from Britain and renames itself Tanzania. Dec. 9, 1971 Ralph J. Bunche, undersecretary of the United Nations from 1955 to his retirement in October, 1971 and winner of the Nobel Peace Prize, dies in New York City. Source: blackfacts.com
THE PULSE Surgeon General: More Minority Doctors Needed ATLANTA (AP) — The new U.S. Surgeon General on Dec. 3 called for stepped-up efforts in increasing the number of minority physicians. In what was one of her first speeches to a large crowd since she was sworn in Nov. 3, Dr. Regina Benjamin noted that Dr. Regina the proportion of Benjamin U.S. physicians who are minorities is only 6 percent— the same proportion as a century ago. “There’s something wrong with that,” said Benjamin, speaking at a conference on health disparities at a hotel in downtown Atlanta. The numbers come from a 2004 estimate of the percentage of U.S. physicians that are black or Hispanic. Blacks and Hispanics account for roughly 28 percent of the U.S. population, according to 2008 figures from the U.S. Census Bureau. Benjamin, 53, was the first black woman to head a state medical society. Benjamin has not said what her priorities will be during her four-year term. Some health policy experts have predicted she might become a leading voice on national health care reform, but she made only a brief reference to the topic in her Dec. 3 speech.
Unilever Recalls All Slim Fast Canned Drinks ENGLEWOOD CLIFFS, N.J. (AP) — Unilever PLC’s U.S. subsidiary says it has recalled all canned Slim Fast drinks because of the possibility of bacterial contamination that could cause diarrhea, nausea and vomiting. The company says the probability of serious health problems is remote. Unilever’s U.S. arm, based in Englewood Cliffs, N.J., says the products were sold nationwide. They came in cartons of four, six or 12 steel cans, 11 ounces in size, and they were also sold individually. The recall, issued Dec. 3, covers all Slim-Fast products in cans, regardless of flavor, best-by date, lot code or UPC number. The company said it is working to determine the production issue that caused the contamination. It has halted production.
Pediatricians Offer Advice for Holiday Toy Safety CHICAGO (AP) — If children are on your holiday gift list, beware. More than two dozen toys have been recalled this year for safety reasons. With safety in mind, the American Academy of Pediatrics has prepared a tips list. Some are common sense, but that often gets lost in the holiday bustle. Above all, pick toys that suit kids’ age, abilities and interest level. Also, to prevent electric shocks, choose battery-operated instead of plug-in toys for kids under 10. Keep young children away
from toys with button batteries and magnets. These can cause serious and even fatal intestinal problems if swallowed. The academy also warns that pull toys with strings longer than 12 inches can be a strangulation hazard for babies.
Obama Says Health Care Reform Means Jobs ALLENTOWN, Pa. (AP) — He’s been spending a lot of time on health care, but President Barack Obama says that doesn’t mean he’s been neglecting the nation’s unemployment troubles. He says the two issues are closely related. Obama told a town hall gathering in Allentown, Pa., on Dec. 4 that health care reform is “part and parcel” of what has to be done to help the economy. He says when small business owners face steep increases in health premiums, that’s money they can’t invest in their businesses or use to hire more workers. Obama says controlling health care costs is part of creating jobs.
CDC: Swine Flu Is Widespread Only in 25 States ATLANTA (AP) — Swine flu infections continue to wane, just as vaccines are becoming plentiful enough that some communities are allowing everyone to get it, not just those in priority groups. Swine flu was widespread in only 25 states last week—mostly in the Northeast and Southwest, officials at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Dec. 4. In late October, 48 states were reporting widespread cases of swine flu. But since then, there’s been a decline across the country, and it appears that a fall wave of swine flu infections has peaked. Meanwhile, a shortage of swine flu vaccine is easing, with 73 million doses now available, roughly twice as much as there was a month ago. And another 10 million doses are expected in the next week, said Dr. Thomas Frieden, the CDC’s director. Since it was first identified in April, swine flu has sickened an estimated 22 million Americans and killed 4,000. It has proved to be similar to seasonal flu but a bigger threat to children and young adults. The swine flu pandemic has so far hit in two waves in the United States: First in the spring, then a larger wave that started in the late summer.
Kaiser to Pay $3.75 Million in False Billing Case SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Four Kaiser health care companies have agreed to pay $3.75 million to settle allegations they improperly billed for teaching physicians’ services. Federal prosecutors said from 1996 through 2002 Kaiser falsely billed Medicare and Medicaid for services the companies said had been provided by teaching physicians. The government alleges the See THE PULSE, page 13
December 10, 2009
L.A. WATTS TIMES
SPORTS BRAD PYE JR.
SPORTS BEAT Notes, quotes and things picked up on the run from coast-to-coast and all the stops in between and beyond. Who says you canâ€™t go back home? Former Atlanta Falcons superstar QB Michael Vick went back home to Atlanta Dec. 6 and ran for one TD and passed for another to help his new team, the Philadelphia Eagles, beat the Falcons, 34-7. Falcon owner Arthur M. Blank hugged Vick and welcomed him back home during the match. Meanwhile, fans greeted Vick with signs reading: â€œWelcome Back Vick.â€? There are still two unbeaten teams left in the NFLâ€”the Indianapolis Colts and the New Orleans Saints. The unbeaten Colts snapped the Tennessee Titansâ€™ fivegame winning streak Dec. 6, 27-17. Young completed 24 of 43 for 270yards and a pair of TDs in defeat. And the beat continuesâ€Ś The Pasadena Rose Bowl will be the collegiate football capital of the world on Jan.1 and 7. On New Yearâ€™s Day, the Oregon Ducks and the Ohio State Buckeyes will rumble. Alabama and Texas tangle in the national championship game on Jan. 7. This will be Texasâ€™ second time playing in the BCS title classic
at the Rose Bowl. Texasâ€™ Vince Young ran the Longhorns into the championship room on the last play of the 2006 game. Alabama will feature Heisman Trophy running back candidate Mark Ingram, who
scored three TDs to push Tim Tebow and Florida out of its No. 1 ranking and out of the national title game, 32-13. Ohio Stateâ€™s Terrelle Pryor joins a parade of black quarterbacks who have starred in the famed Rose Bowl Classic. Included are Minnesotaâ€™s Sandy Stephens, Washingtonâ€™s Warren Moon (only black QB in the NFL Hall of Fame), and USCâ€™s Rodney Peete, Jimmy Jones and Vince Evans et al. Donâ€™t add me to the list of those who thought QB Matt Barkleyâ€™s TD pass to Damian Williams with
country club. Membership at COUNTRY CLUB black Meadowbrook dipped as club memContinued from page 1
Meadowbrook celebrated its 50th anniversary December 3, 2009. Speakers and guests reflected on the clubâ€™s roots, its sometimes rocky history and its revival after years of decline. The country club and golf course are a testament to some black residents who â€œtook the position of, â€˜We don't have to beg; we can create our own,â€™â€? said Dr. Dianne Boardley Suber, president of St. Augustineâ€™s College. During the clubâ€™s infancy, Batey said he and other founding members had trouble convincing people to pay $100. But membership bloomed throughout the 1960s. By 1971, the club had 186 members, according to a report from a consultant who researched the history of the club. The civil rights movement improved the lives of Meadowbrook members, but it changed the role of a
THE PULSE Continued from page 12 services were actually provided by resident physicians without a teaching physicianâ€™s supervision. Kaiser voluntarily disclosed the misconduct to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office. The settlement was announced Dec. 3. The Kaiser companies involved are Kaiser Foundation Hospitals, Kaiser Foundation Health Plan Inc., The Permanente Medical Group and Southern California Permanente Medical Group.
against Rice, the Cougars prevailed 73-14. Sumlinâ€™s Cougars play Air Force in the Sports Bowl Dec. 29, and Randy Shannonâ€™s Miami Hurricanes play Air Force in the Armed Forces Bowl Dec. 31. And the beat continuesâ€Ś If Michael Cooper, USCâ€™s new womenâ€™s basketball coach, improves upon parting coach Mark Trakhâ€™s 17-15 record, will athletic director Mike Garrett be happy? Cooper won two WNBA titles as head coach of the L.A. Sparks. Two college basketball teams coached by men of color and ranked in the Top 25 in the nation are Lorenzo Romarâ€™s No. 12 rated
bers opted for fancier 18-hole courses that once barred them. Eventually, Meadowbrook could no longer support all of its amenities. The pool and tennis courts closed years ago. Until St. Augustineâ€™s bought the club in 2007, the golf course was full of weeds. As the volunteer manager of the course, IBM retiree Andre Tiller is leading efforts to bring the course back to life.
46-seconds to play against UCLA was tacky. True, the Trojans were leading 21-7 at the time, but most of the players on both sides consider the UCLA-USC Classic the biggest and most historic of their collegiate careers. If there is time on the clock, the goal is to score. USC will play Boston College in the Emerald Bowl game Dec. 26 at the AT&T Park in San Francisco. UCLA has to hope Navy beats Army Dec. 12. If Army wins, the Cadets will automatically fill the Eagle Bank Bowl. Kevin Sumlin, named the first black head football coach at the University Houston in 2007, has the Cougars ranked No. 18 with a 10-3 report card. In their last game
Washington Huskies and John Thompson Jr.â€™s No. 16 ranked Georgetown Hoyas. Both got off to 5-0 starts. And the beat continuesâ€Ś Roy Jones Jr. failed to win his ninth title over five weight classes from middleweight to heavyweight Dec. 2 in Australia. Reason: He was TKOed in the first round by Australian champion Danny Green.
On Dec. 3, the college unveiled plaques honoring the clubâ€™s recent placement on the National Register of Historic Places. The college also dedicated the clubhouse to J.J. Sansom Jr., a founding member who died in 1989. Sansomâ€™s wife, Vivian, is a retired physical education teacher and coach at Shaw University. The couple played golf at Meadowbrook, said their son, Joseph Sansom. Tiller and his family donated $10,000 to St. Augustineâ€™s. Money is
tight at Meadowbrook, although its cheap prices have attracted more golfers, while pricier courses are suffering. Only a handful of the 45 Meadowbrook founding members are still alive, Batey said. After the ceremony, his gaze shifted to the course, where golfers were teeing off. â€œIt turned out,â€? he said. â€œIâ€™m just as proud as I can be.â€? Information from: The News & Observer, www.newsobserver.com.
The fine imposed on Serena Williams and the mandate to be on probation for two years for cussing out a line judge in a tournament last summer is overkill. A fine would have been acceptable, but a two-year probation penalty is too much. Has any other tennis player ever been socked like this? I donâ€™t think so. On Dec. 2, Williams was named Sportswoman of the Year at the 26th annual March of Dimes Sports Luncheon. What is your latest take on the Tiger Woods tale? USA Today columnist Christine Brennan says: â€œWeâ€™ve learned that in many ways, heâ€™s just another outrageously rich, self-centered jock.â€? And the beat continuesâ€Ś How good will the defending NBA champion Los Angeles Lakers be this year? With Kobe Bryant, Pau Gasol, Andrew Bynum, Ron
Artest, Derek Fisher, Lamar Odom, Jordan Farmar and more, the Lakers will likely win another championship. The Phoenix Suns snipping at their toes, should motivate the Lakers to keep the pressure on. And the beat ends. Brad Pye Jr. can be reached at Switchreel@aol.com.
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